Sunday, July 22, 2012

A Fleeting Trip To Gananoque, Ontario

On Sundays, I typically invite you all to take a stroll around the garden with me, and then we enjoy some cookies with coffee, tea or juice. The bad news is that there won’t be a garden tour this week. With the drought we have been facing for the past few weeks, and the heat that is accompanying it, my outdoor plants have been struggling, and there isn’t very much to see. Many of the perennials have stopped growing or slowed down significantly; others can barely hold onto their blooms. What can I expect up ahead? I don’t know. I just know that it’s been a tough time for the garden to date. So no garden tour. That’s the bad news.

The good news is that we’re all going on a field trip. YAY! Everyone loves field trips, don’t they? Hey...who said no? Well, for those of you that do, bring along a bottle of water, a hat and some sunscreen. Oh, and make sure to wear comfortable walking shoes. Because we are going to do a lot of walking. Bring your camera, too, if you’re a photo buff like me.

Alright, now climb onto the ‘Plowing Through Life’ touring bus and away we go to beautiful and quaint Gananoque, a town in Leeds and Grenville United Counties, Ontario with a population of about 5,200 year-round residents. It is approximately 20 minutes east of Kingston.


The name Gananoque (pronounced GAN-ə-NOK-way) is an aboriginal name which means "town on two rivers". One way to remember the pronunciation is "The right way, the wrong way, and the Gananoque".


Gananoque is referred to as the "Gateway to the Thousand Islands," which lie next to it in the St. Lawrence River, and which is the town’s most important tourist attraction.




Local attractions include boat cruises. One of the destinations is to Boldt Castle, a monument of love on Heart Island of George C. Boldt for his wife Louise. I am eager to visit this place soon, hopefully this summer, so I can take dozens of photos. Unfortunately, we can’t visit until we renew our passports, which expired a few weeks ago, because Heart Island is in the United States.


On our spontaneous and fleeting trip we discover Joel Stone Heritage Park, named after the founder of Gananoque, who was also a local hero of the War of 1812. Colonel Joel Stone, who served with Loyalist militia during the American Revolutionary War, established a settlement on this site in 1789.


The park is located on Water Street where you have an excellent view of the St. Lawrence and some of its famous islands.


The park includes a children’s splash pad, which looks extremely inviting, especially on a day where it is sunny, hot and humid, and you’re certain your head will catch on fire at any moment.


Right near the splash pad you can enjoy a dip in the river at the Joel Stone Beach if you’ve brought along a bathing suit. And if you’ve packed a picnic lunch, you can spend a few hours near the water. Isn’t that a great way to spend a warm summer day?



If you don’t feel like swimming, you can simply walk around the park, take lots of photos, kick back, relax and enjoy the view.



And just like in Kingston, the Gananoque residents and visitors enjoy being on the water.




Down the street from the park are shops to browse. Don’t you just love these quaint buildings?



We venture a little further and discover these beautiful old homes...




...some of which have been converted into inns, and bed and breakfasts.


Of course, not everything is picturesque in Gananoque. The ‘Link Plant’ lies abandoned on the banks of the Gananoque River near its confluence with the St. Lawrence. It once employed over 200 people and was one of the town’s most important businesses.


This small factory once played a significant role during the Second World War. If you are curious to learn more, head over here.


You just know there's an axe murderer behind there
This is a first visit to Gananoque, but it certainly won’t be the last. Aren’t you just eager to return and explore the area a little further? And perhaps get a closer look at that building past the water? What do you think it is? I think it may be a church...


There will be another field trip to Gananoque in the future. I’ll let you know when it’s happening in case you care to tag along on another great Canadian tour.


Wishing you all a lovely Sunday.

28 comments:

  1. O beautiful.. that water is so inviting. There's also an axe murderer in that first house, by the way.

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    1. Hahaha...yes, you might be right. That would be a good place for an axe murderer!

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  2. Thank you for inviting me along on your field trip! I've been to Gananoque but I don't remember seeing the abadoned factory. Thanks for allowing me to see the town through your wonderful lens. I hope you have a fantastic rest of the day enjoying your family.

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    1. We just happened to stubmle upon it as we walked around. I don't know why, but when I see these abandoned buildings, they sadden me. Perhaps because they were one filled with life and now left to rot. I imagine people going in and out of them, and know there is so much history, and so many stories in these buildings.

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  3. It has been a few years since we visited Gananoque and took the boat cruise. It was lovely taking the tour with you.

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    1. So glad you could make it, Crafty. I hope to take one of those cruises this year. I know I will love it.

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  4. Unbelieveable tour...thanks for this...always room to learn more about our country!

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    1. Oh yes, there is so much to this beautiful country. Always room to learn much more!

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  5. A charming town! Looks like there will be some War of 1812 re-enactment there at the end of August, judging from the park sign? That could be fun!

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    1. You are very perceptive, Debra! Yes, it looks like there will be a re-enactment. Maybe we'll be able to attend it. We'll see.

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  6. This is what I love about southern Ontario - there are so many wonderful spots a hop-skip and a jump away. I've been to Genanoque when visiting my sister - really enjoyed the historical buildings and quaint ecclectic shopping. Thanks for these great pics :)

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    1. Oh gosh, Jane, you can't imagine how thrilled I am at how many little spots there are to visit. It's truly magnificent. A photographer's paradise, for sure.

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  7. Martha, what a quaint, adorable town. I could almost feel myself there. A good change to the gray, rainy Sunday we are having in South Florida.

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    1. Oh, Ana, our weather has been hot and dry for weeks now. Please send up some of that rain; we can use it!

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  8. Boy have I neglected my own province! The truth is we are generally so focussed on getting to Muskoka we forget about the beauties of Eastern Ontario. This is definitely on my list of places I want o see. I have a friend in Perth and I'll bet I could see a lot more of your area if I finally went for the visit I've been saying I was going to make for years now!

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    1. There are a lot of quaint little areas like Gananoque near me that you would love. If you head towards here, we will make it a point of getting together!

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  9. I'm sorry about your drought, Martha. We've been in one here, as well, but finally got a bit of rain this past week. Hope you get some soon. Maybe if the gnomes did a rain dance...

    The field trip was really fun, though...what a beautiful place! All that water sure looked inviting and the architecture is intriguing,too. I love the look of the roof on the church. It is lovely, though as the wife of a maintenance man, I shudder to imagine what it would be like to work on that roof. I'll look forward to taking a closer look on our next field trip there. :-)

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    1. Beth, I've never seen anything like this. It's as if there's a dome over our city. We haven't seen rain in ages. It's simply horrible. My garden is terribly stressed, and it's been too hot to enjoy it. Hahahaha...yes, I will ask the gnomes to do a rain dance. There are certainly enough of them out there.

      Gananoque is lovely. I can't believe it took us so long to visit. Oh well, better late than never. I hope to return again before summer's end to explore it further.

      Ack, I shudder, too, thinking of someone working on that roof. I'm afraid of heights, so the thought of it scares me to death!

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  10. We have always wanted to visit there...we have family in Ottawa,but each time we're so busy visiting that we don't take the time to sightsee.Thanks for the lovely tour.

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    1. I know what you mean; when visiting family, it's hard to find time to look around. We don't have any family here, so we're able to run around and explore!

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  11. I love how grand the old houses are. I would love to live in one of those someday even though they are way to big for my needs.

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    1. They really are magnificent homes. And the ones that have been restored are out of this world! And they are huge!

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  12. This is only 20 minutes away from you? I would be there ALL the time!!
    Splash pad, that's funny, we have them here, but we don't call them that, or maybe we do, I just have never heard them called that...
    All your photos are so beautiful, it really makes me want to go. And I've got my passport ready!

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    1. You'd think being only 20 minutes away, I'd go there more often! I don't even know what took us so long to actually go for a first visit. But there are so many places to visit around us that it's tough deciding where to go sometimes!

      Any time you're ready, Kay, come on down!

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  13. Such a lovely town with very pretty and interesting buildings! I would love to explore there. Sorry about your drought problems. We have the same, which means hard times for farmers and fire danger for all. :-( Hoping for some gentle rain for your garden!

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    1. Welcome, Denise; nice to see you here! We are really hoping for rain. It's absolutely horrible how long this drought has been going on. Hopefully soon!

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  14. I like it when you take us places! Those houses..OH!

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    1. Thank you, Lael! I like it when you come along :)

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